Superstars with that style swagger

Maria Bobila

In celebration of Black History Month, it is best to give some recognition to a few style icons that have not only impressed the eyes (and ears) of the public but have changed the look of the hip-hop and R&B music scene.

The rapper with a notable stylistic flair may have titled himself as the “Louis Vuitton Don” but don’t take that as all talk because he knows his stuff when it comes to fashion. West held a fashion writing gig at Complex Magazine, which entailed columns about all-over hoodies, gray jeans and more. West turned urban culture classy with a clean-cut look consisting of Air Jordans, polos, jeans and a backpack during the release of his debut album, “College Dropout.” Currently, West’s style has evolved into a phenomenal high-fashion look with designer labels, expensive shades and fine jewelry. Word on the streets is that you can eventually cop West’s look with his upcoming clothing line, Pastelle. The hopes are high for this line because interviews have shown that West has had a knack for becoming a fashion designer before becoming a hip-hop mogul.

This Barbadian songstress not only sports a unique bob that dominates Victoria Beckham’s but her catchy tunes have made us want to see more of her. Since her debut hit, “Pon De Replay,” she has definitely stepped up her sense of style. It is viewed as quite eclectic from rock-star appeal (after her release of “Good Girl Gone Bad”) during appearances and performances to beautiful short dresses and long flowing gowns during walks on the red carpet. As of late, Rihanna serves as a muse for fashion labels by being a spokesmodel for JC Penney’s junior line, Miss Bisou, and strutting the runway of DSquared’s Spring 2008 show in Milan. Marc Jacobs has even made a handbag named after her. H&M has released a line of clothing for its campaign, “Fashion Against AIDS,” which spreads awareness about HIV/AIDS, and the line includes a tanktop designed by the singer herself.

Also known as André Benjamin, this Outkast member has a sense of style as extraordinary and different as his music and videos. Given the title of “Best Dressed Man in the World” by Esquire Magazine in September 2004, André 3000 is heavily influenced by the looks of the “old man in the neighborhood” and movies such as “Legends of the Fall” and “The Great Gatsby.” André also has an affinity for the concept of “the uniform,” which is portrayed in his brand new clothing line, Benjamin Bixby, which just debuted on Jan. 29. Inspired by the American football player of the 1930s, Benjamin Bixby consists of menswear pieces, such as preppy wool sweaters, corduroy blazers, high waisted trousers and striped dress shirts, all adorned with the label’s logo of a hot air balloon. According to reviews, the line seems promising; it even received support and approval by Vogue’s one and only Anna Wintour.